Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Rich & Famous
Receiving help from triad boss Ah-Chai (Chow Yun Fat) to settle gambling debts. Two brothers Yung and Kwok (Andy Lau and Alex Man) enlist themselves into Chai’s gang to repay him for his services. Over time they establish themselves more deeply into the family, but when Kwok begins showing tremendous potential and loyalty to the gang, Yung is slowly being left in the shadows as a disappointment to Chai. This leads Yung to drift away and sway his loyalty over to rival triad boss Big Eye (Lam Chung). Leaving Kwok to decide where his own loyalty lays, with his mentor Chai or his brother.
If you have seen a triad movie or two in your lifetime, then Rich and Famous may not offer you much that you have not seen before. It may not be the best in its genre, but it still manages to get the job done fairly well. It has a pretty straight forward plot, with pretty predictable plot turns here and there. But what it does not have, that most other gun shooting’ Chow Yun fat action flicks do . . .is a gun shooting Chow Yun Fat! Well that is not all together so. Yes, Chow does manage to get a few shots off here and there. But be warned Chow Yun Fat action fans, this is no “Hard Boiled” or “A Better Tomorrow”. He is still indeed an important character, but he does not carry the film on his back like he has in previous outings. No, this time the weight is being shared by Andy Lau and Alex Man. Both actors were fantastic, especially Man who showed great character development throughout the course of the film. In addition, we get treated to a small but rewarding appearance from Danny Lee as the grumpy cop trying to take Chai down.
Getting back to the action, there are gun fights, there are car chases, there are some kicks and punches (and cutting and stabbing). But in the end, you realize this is much more a drama then the action film it’s been labelled as. It is really the drama, and the story, that carries the film. The action only comes in when it’s needed to compliment the plot. But if you watch this film anticipating the 25 minute gun blazing shootout, when the credits roll do not think you missed it, because it wasn’t there.
Rich and Famous does not completely wrap up at the end, this is because it’s the first half of a two part series, the second being Tragic Hero. So there are many things left unresolved. Don’t worry though, there is enough or a wrap up at the end that is does completely itself as a stand along film. But if you want the whole story, you must seek out Tragic hero.
A Film by Taylor Wong